The end of City’s boss?

2018-04-23 16:15
Msunduzi Municipal Manager Sizwe Hadebe. (File)

Msunduzi Municipal Manager Sizwe Hadebe. (File)

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Some Msunduzi officials are hoping that the mounting pressure on the council to take disciplinary action against municipal manager Sizwe Hadebe will see him being shown the door soon.

Officials who spoke to The Witness anonymously for fear of victimsation, said Msunduzi has not been stable since the suspension of former municipal manager Mxolisi Nkosi in March 2016.

Hadebe was permanently appointed as the City manager in November.

This was done despite resistance from opposition parties who were dissatisfied with his performance when he was acting on secondment from the Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Department (Cogta) following Nkosi’s suspension.

Hadebe is currently hounded by numerous allegations of misconduct including contravening the Municipal Systems Act, giving unlawful instructions to his subordinates as well as interfering with the management and administration of some of the City’s business units.

Last week, councillors from the opposition parties and a few from the ANC demanded that Mayor Themba Njilo suspend Hadebe pending a probe into a damning audio recording with a voice suspected to be his.

Njilo said the legal department is investigating the matter, including the authenticity of the recording.

He committed to bring the report before the full council, which is scheduled to convene on Wednesday.

DA caucus leader Sibongiseni Majola has also written to the speaker Jabu Ngubo saying the council is legally obligated to make findings on Hadebe’s alleged misconduct or establish a special committee to investigate and make recommendations to it. The South African Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu) has written to Njilo echoing the sentiments that Hadebe be placed on suspension pending disciplinary proceedings.

Some officials at the City Hall are hoping that Hadebe will be suspended after Wednesday’s full council meeting. They said they do not think he will come back from the suspension as Nkosi also never returned from his.

One official said “It’s not that we don’t think he is competent for the job but the majority of the decisions he has taken make us believe that he doesn’t have the City’s best interests at heart so we are fully behind the Msunduzi 9,” referring to the nine senior managers who sent a petition to the national and provincial government asking for their urgent intervention in the ailing municipality.

The senior managers said under Hadebe’s leadership, the City received a disclaimer of audit opinion for the 2016/2017 financial year because he is allegedly running the administration without due fiduciary care or sound, ethical governance.

Cogta Minister Zweli Mkhize, whose predecessor Des van Rooyen received the petition, has since asked for the Cogta MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube to look into the allegations made.

This came after Dube-Ncube’s office also commenced with its own investigations into governance issues within City Hall.

“I actually considered finding a job elsewhere but Pietermaritzburg is my home so I can’t leave the city I love because of him so I decided to stay so that I can rebuild what he has destroyed.

“We did it once when the municipality was placed under administration and we can do it again,” said an official who has been with Msunduzi for eight years.

Njilo said he has met with Dube-Ncube over the allegations raised in the senior managers’ petition but would not elaborate on whether the investigation has commenced.

Attempts to get comment from Hadebe were unsuccessful but he previously told The Witness that he will respect the outcome of the investigation into allegations against him.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  sizwe hadebe

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